Mimicking a beetle

Image licensed under CC BY 2.0

SCIENCE | MIDDLE SCHOOL

Biomimicry and a Desert Beetle

Copying the way a desert beetle gets water, scientists have designed a membrane that can extract water from the air. Since all air contains water, even in the desert, this could provide a very inexpensive way to supply drinking water. This audio story describes an application of the idea of “biomimicry,” or using ideas from nature to solve technological problems. Listen to learn how this idea can help solve the problem of scarce drinking water.

Language Challenge

Tweet Share on Facebook

Want to Listen?

TEACHERS: Access our entire library of lessons and current events!

With a free teacher account, you get:
  • Our lesson collections for Social Studies, ELA, and Science
  • Authentic audio news stories curated for the classroom
  • Teaching resources to check for understanding
  • And new Current Events every school day
Teachers Join Free

Already a Member? Login Now

Story Length: 4:01

Listen to the Story:

Listening Comprehension Questions

  • In what ways did Andrew Carnegie’s libraries serve their communities?
  • How did Carnegie benefit from a library when he was growing up?
  • Which personality traits helped propel Carnegie from poverty to riches? Bring specific details from the story to support your ideas.
  • According to Carnegie, what should rich people do with their money and why? Why was Carnegie known as both generous and “brutal”?

Discussion Themes

  • In your opinion, what should really rich people do with their fortunes?
  • What does it take for a person to rise from “rags to riches”?

Socrative users can import these questions using the following code: SOC-1234

Listening Organizers

  • Fact, Question, Response

  • Language Identification Organizer

  • Deeper Meaning Chart